Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Interesting New Indicators Efforts

Several new community indicators efforts are in the works, and I wanted to draw your attention to them. First, I want to tell you about a report just released you may want to look at.

The Redmond Community Indicators Report available at Redmond 2022 is a nice example of conveying interesting information simply -- the number of trees is a nice touch. I particularly like their layout of "Go Figure" -- a quick facts-at-a-glance report -- with three columns: How much/many, Of what, and Trend. Some of the new efforts out there may want to take a look at what they've done.

Northwest Arkansas is developing a community indicators report, and have taken an interesting tack. They've identified a sizable population from the Marshall Islands as part of their community, and are trying to engage them in the process. The project is moving forward with a recent community meeting to identify indicators. They've got a nice mix of partners supporting the effort -- looking forward to good things when the report is released at the end of the summer.

Baton Rouge, Louisiana is moving forward with their CityStats project (doc). More about that project is available here. They had the community identify indicators and are now in the research stage prior to publication -- watch for this one as well!

Montgomery County, Maryland is creating a community indicators document as well, and they're asking for community input via the internet. Here's their announcement:

You are invited to participate in an exciting environmental planning project - jointly sponsored by the Montgomery County Planning Board and the County Executive. Called the Healthy and Sustainable Communities initiative, county staff is crafting environmental policy goals and indicators that measure their progress - with your help! While county environmental programs do a great deal toward improving quality of life in Montgomery County, County Executive Ike Leggett and Planning Board Chairman Royce Hanson have identified a missing link: a set of goals and corresponding measures of progress to guide decision making.

Join them at their kick-off workshop June 25-26 at the Universities at Shady Grove. At the workshop, they want participants like you to help them chart our progress toward meeting sustainability goals.
RSVP View draft schedule of events

They have kicked off our project as a virtual document. Give your feedback on how they should measure our environmental progress, even if you can't join the workshop.
Log on to contribute your thoughts to any of the following indicator reports. Simply click on a goal and enter your comments. Visit often to view what others say. And please spread the word!

1. Climate protection
Energy use
Carbon emissions
Waste management
2. Clean air
Air quality index
b. Travel indicators
Clean water
4. Wildlife habitat and open space
5. Smart communities
Healthy people
7. Green economy
Environmental justice

Exciting work all around. Please keep us informed of your new community indicator projects and your report releases. Thanks!


Post a Comment